Top 9 things to know about shipping, receiving mail this holiday season


The holidays are right around the corner, but there’s still time on your side to send and receive mail. Shipping and receiving mail during the holidays can be strenuous, so here are some tips to make your visits run smoothly:


  • The post office hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. for parcel pick-up and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. for outbound mail, however it’s still closed on Sundays and federal holidays.


  • A new military priority line is available for Airmen in uniform from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.



  • Warehouse shelves are at max capacity, it means a lot of package slips are in the mailboxes up front. Team Aviano members are asked to check their mail boxes more frequently for package receipts to clear up shelf space.



  • Nearly 20,000 packages are delivered here each month. In December, more than 60,000 packages are received. Volunteers can help counteract the influx of packages and need for sorting. Individuals can walk-in but groups should schedule in advance. Groups can schedule to volunteer by calling Staff Sgt. Eric Carter, 31st Communications Squadron postal service center NCO in charge, at 632-4086.


  • Processing mail takes up the majority of the 31st CS postal Airmen’s time. Once received, each package is scanned, placed on a warehouse shelf, and a written slip is placed in your mailbox. With only 20 Airmen sorting mail for more than 4,000 mailboxes, it’s hard to get mail directly to the customer after it arrives. If you’ve received a web notification that your package has arrived, please allow 1-2 business days for the slip to arrive in your mailbox.


  • It’s not just the distribution area that gets busy during the holidays. The outbound mail section is quite busy as well. To save time, ensure the “To” and “From” sections are filled out properly on your mail. Additionally, have the necessary customs form ready when you approach the counter.



  • With the influx of incoming and outgoing mail this time of year, it’s important to understand mail may take longer to arrive at Aviano Air Base or to your loved ones. According to the post office, it takes on average nine days for inbound mail and eleven days for outbound mail to arrive at the desired location.


  • Not everything can be shipped through the mail! One of the many benefits of being stationed in Italy is the wine. However, it is illegal to send it home through the United States Postal Service. There’re other carrier services you can use on the economy.  


  • When reusing boxes to send merchandise, the previous shipping markers must be covered with tape or black marker ink. Boxes labeled with the previous merchandise logo will not be accepted.


The Aviano Post office encourages Team Aviano members to use the above tips to help ease the stress of sending and receiving mail during the holidays.


“The post office team is working hard to ensure Airmen and their families are receiving their packages for the holidays,” said Carter. “We ask that members use this information to make sure everything runs smoothly and to have a happy holiday.”